Weird scenes inside the homestead! What have we to add to the big wide web of weird today? A couple of things only, along with some sad news and some happy snaps. Successes and failures, as usual. Trying to keep them all in stride, which with the wild flowers and a short country drive, isn’t too big a challenge at the moment.
Best to get the crap out of the way first, I prefer. We’ve got seemingly severe blackberry failure and an established bee colony suddenly lost. I could write exhaustively on just those two, but since I’m already exhausted, I’ll keep it brief. And continue the relentless churning in my mind alone.
These photos and several more have seen the cyber rounds this week, let me assure you! And the cornucopia of responses we’ve received is rather astounding. Long story short—we’ve had some lovely rains, finally. But it sent our blackberries from thriving and gorgeous, to this brown, crispy-looking horror nearly overnight.
Not just a few bushes either, the entire row, a dozen bushes easy. It looks terrible. So we got a bit frantic and have been sending photos to Ison’s Nursery, where we got them. Also, to various friends and forums, where we’ve had answers to run the gamut: too dry, a virus, a fungus, a blight, Botryosphaeria canker, empty pocket syndrome, aphid damage, and then the kicker . . . This is totally normal development.
You mean to tell me these could be normally progressing blackberries and after many years of growing blackberries we just never noticed it before?!
Well that would certainly be a big and welcomed WOW! Yes please!
But unfortunately, I don’t think so. They look brown and shriveled beyond anything I’ve seen in any of the online photorama. And there’s no sign of aphids, and it’s not cane blight, and it’s certainly not too dry, although I totally understand that guess, since that’s exactly what it looks like.
And I do so appreciate all the speculation, seriously! It gets me thinking and exploring every time and I do so love all the effort and camaraderie inherit in it. Be wrong, it’s not the end of the world!
Of course, what I did so notice among the seeds of speculation was the one that was, unsurprisingly, totally missing. Toxic rain perhaps? Some other oddities in the atmosphere, perhaps? Not on anyone’s radar? Really?
No idea what’s happening in this photo with the blue dot-purple ring, I just snapped the shot with the tablet as soon as I saw the trail while busy in the garden.
On better themes . . .
I also took some lovely happy snaps of the wild flowers blooming along the road, which was so much more gorgeous than what I was able to capture here. But I tried, and that should count for something, no?
And on that note, this post will have a Part 2 to finish later, cause that’s all I can manage at the moment. More to follow, so much more!
Thanks for stopping by!
I leave with a song that motivates me when I really need it most. Hope it works for y’all too!
A bunch of happy snaps, a bit of gardening news, a wild-like encounter and some homestead TV for today.
Everything’s blooming and we’re scheduled for frost/freeze at the end of the week! I was afraid that might happen, so have not put out the frost-sensitive plants, though they are definitely ready to be moved.
We’ve also kept the row cover handy in the garden for a quick save. A light frost won’t bother much in there now, but a freeze or prolonged low temps would do a lot of damage.
The goats do an excellent job of keeping the fence line cleared, so helpful! We have a boarder joining our wee herd for a while, Broderick, a sweet, young Billy whose owner was sick of listening to his constant mewing. He’s not made more than a peep since coming here, so he must be happy, despite his rivalry with our herd queen, Summer. They’ve butted heads many times, and poor Broderick doesn’t have horns. He’s had a bloody head, been chased around, and he keeps going back for more! So cute but so tough!
That’s Summer, the white one on the left. On the right, that’s Broderick facing the camera in front, and behind him also facing the camera is our whether, Hercules.
Of course, there’s always the dumbbell of the group, and that would be Bluebonnet, Summer’s offspring.
There’s a steady supply of captivating entertainment around here. Just yesterday, around cocktail hour, I went out on the back porch to snip some cilantro from the herb boxes for our guacamole snack, and I stepped out onto this surprising tableaux.
I couldn’t believe my eyes, the gorgeous ribbon snake was positioned there as still as a statue. For long enough I went back inside to get my tablet for photos. And then, our barn cat, Skittles, sauntered over, neither the cat nor the dog remotely aware of the snake’s presence!
This went on for quite some time!
Finally I yelled to Hubby inside, “You’ve got to see this!”
He comes out, and of course, boys will be boys. He was not as satisfied with the simple moving tableau and banal observation of the odd occurrence, oh no, he had to throw some action into it.
So he chucks a little plastic planter into the middle of the scene, which startles the snake and snaps Skittles instantly into predator mode.
She spots the snake and takes a pose.
“Oh, no!” I gasp. Hubby says, “Huh?”
“Don’t let her get him!” I exclaim.
“Wait, who don’t you want to get who?” He replies.
“Save the snake!” I gasp.
So, in a snap he picks up the water bowl and throws its full contents onto the cat.
Happy ending, it worked, the pretty little wild thing slid swiftly beneath the deck. 🤗
Moving on to chick and piglet news, my how they’ve grown!
On the left are Hubby’s incubator-hatched chicks, and on the right are hen-hatched. Just 6 each, which is not a good success rate. Hubby’s got another batch going, pilot error on the previous one, he says, so fingers crossed!
The piglets are doing great. A very large litter, 12, all still alive and kicking. I was hoping to get a short clip of them wrestling, it’s so funny, but it’s not easy to capture, since they are mostly eating all the time.
Our skies in the days leading up to the latest ‘rain event’. We get the perception of rain, mostly, but rarely a real rain, unless it’s a flooding deluge.
It REALLY fools most folks! Because it’s overcast and drizzling for days, so the yards and gardens get squishy. But it’s not a lot of rain, 3 inches of rain over 3 days ‘feels’ like a lot of rain. A rain gauge will prove it, but most folks don’t have those. Not to mention that from one county to the next it is often drastically different in amounts. So, they complain about all the rain, while our ponds and creeks are still very low to empty.
Technology continues to leap forward in the expansion of ‘climate remediation’ systems. I suspect one of these days they won’t even need to blanket the skies in chemicals anymore and folks will be tickled pink that the Uber-wealthy and corporations can change the weather on a dime and blame the birds, or the cows, or the SUVs.
“The “Clear Sky Manager New Generation” climate safety system uses the synergy of a growing pool of the most efficient and proven weather management technologies, and also develops new promising technologies that will allow more effectively to carry out the weather management. Currently, “Clear Sky Manager New Generation” uses the synergy of 2 of the most efficient, safest, recognized by the WMO, technologies: The technology of unipolar electrical ionization of the lower atmosphere using stationary, mobile and air-mobile ion generators (ILAP type ionizers). Cloud seeding technology using environmentally friendly reagents, as well as an innovative cloud seeding method based on the unique biological ability of new prospective reagents to “cause” rain.”
While they work on perfecting that, we have the fallout of the last decades of weather experimentation to deal with, but hey, what’s a little Alzheimer’s for the greater good?
Aluminum Snow: Lab Test Confirmed
“Aluminum nanoparticle fallout from climate engineering operations are building up in our snow, soils and runoff waters, the levels are far beyond alarming. Lab test results of snow from the side of Northern California’s Mt. Shasta are a truly shocking example. Testing samples from this formerly pristine water source have revealed levels of aluminum that are so astronomically high that the meltwater can only be considered completely contaminated.”
“China’s Mindblowing Weather Modification, Geoengineering and ELF Transmitter Projects” An oldie but goodie from ClimateViewer for those fixated on the ‘China balloon’ in the news:
This post is not for most vegetarians or vegans, or anyone easily shaken by reality. Graphic images and musings on the cycle of life will be presented with impunity.
This post is for those who: ~Love bacon; ~May ponder the ethics of eating meat, perhaps even to the point of reading such books as The Omnivore’s Dilemma; ~Think we’re crazy for doing such monumental tasks ourselves, instead of going to the grocer or butcher like normal folk.
Before getting into the boring stuff, let me start with a virtual standing ovation and huge ego-stroke to MY MAN!
And, just a bit of backstory for nostalgia’s sake. Mama Chop and Papa Chop were our first pigs. They are Red Wattles, a heritage breed that we bought from friends as a breeding pair about 7 years ago. We would’ve kept Mama Chop as a breeder indefinitely, except for one major problem—as sweet as she was, she kept squishing her piglets, no matter what we did to try to prevent it. And, try Hubby did, repeatedly, for several years, to no avail.
Something else peculiar about Mama Chop, which I have not noticed with any of our other pigs: She smelled fantastic. I’m talking about her natural aroma, not her cooked flesh full of seasonings, which is also proving to be delicious. I mean her living self—just being in the vicinity near her—she smelled like maple syrup. That may sound crazy, but it’s absolutely true.
Fortuitously, Mother Earth News has a feature story about this breed in their current issue. “Grandma and Grandpa’s Red Wattle Hogs” by Amanda Sorell. “Red Wattle hogs are immense, reddish pigs with fleshy appendages that dangle from each side of their necks. Their up-turned noses and upright ears with drooping tips give them a friendly demeanor that matches reports of the breed’s charm.”
“According to The Livestock Conservancy (TLC), this pig’s gentility lends itself well to small-scale, independent producers, and its foraging skills make it suitable for pasture production. Further, this hardy breed is adaptable to a wide range of climates, and it grows rapidly—usually reaching maturity between 600-800 pounds, but individual hogs can weigh as much as 1,200 pounds.”
We don’t know how much she weighed in at slaughter time, but here’s Hubby’s approximation of her results: 150 – 200 pounds of meat for our consumption, that is approximately: 25 # chops 40 # sausage 36 # ham 20# bacon 15 # hocks 20# stew meat 10# in pressure canned 2 gallons bone broth 3 gallons rendered lard Plus dogs get ~40#s of scraps…..skin, lungs, ears, liver.
But, it’s SO MUCH WORK! He is one man in one small kitchen with one unskilled helper. That’s me. I’m the equivalent of his Girl-Friday (aka Galley Slave) — on call, doing what I can in wrapping and cleaning and cooking. The bulk of the work falls on him and he does it like a true stoic.
But what about the bang for the buck? Most folks who raise their own pigs don’t do their own slaughtering, for myriad reasons. It is a highly-skilled process that requires significant strength and time and at least some basic equipment.
It’s now 10 days since she was slaughtered, that makes: 2 days to hang, initial butchering one day, hams and bacon curing for 5 days, a day for making and packaging sausages, a day for smoking, a day for roasting bones, making broth, canning meat and broth.
However, it’s not only costly to go to a professional processor, it’s also a lot more stress on the pigs, as you’ve got to load them into a trailer and drive them quite a distance, sometimes as far as 2 hours away, plus reserve your slot months in advance (whether or not your pigs are ready), all which can affect the final flavor of the meat. We’ve heard many complaints from friends about this process.
Another significant drawback to this expensive convenience is typically, depending on the processor, you will forfeit many valuable parts, including the organ meats, the leaf and regular lard, the bones, including all the trimmings that go to the dogs, not to mention to the vultures, coyotes, and the bugs and soil as the entire animal never leaves our land.
Such is the cycle of life and this makes so much more sense than concentrating carcasses and waste in one place. We, and our neighbors and friends and pets and land are the direct beneficiaries of our labor, and that degree of skill and self-reliance makes me super proud. And when I’m proud, Hubby’s pleased, and so it goes the bitter-sweet circle of life!
While just two hours away Dallas was getting flooded, we got a measly two inches. Certainly not enough to fill the pond or raise the creek or get the ravines flowing again.
But it was enough for a crazy number of mushrooms!
I was collecting mushrooms for several days afterward, including some first-time-finds—a choice edible and the weirdest mushroom I’ve ever seen.
Mushrooms popping up everywhere.
And now on to the good stuff!
Foraging for anything is just about my favorite thing to do in decent weather, and mushrooms especially. But in hot, sticky weather there better be some bang for the buck, as the saying goes.
Especially because the chiggers thrive here when it’s hot, wet, and humid, so shorts and sandals are not an option.
Last year with our very wet spring we had chanterelles all summer long. We’ve had very few this year, so this nice haul has been a real treat.
Hubby found this ‘chicken of the woods’ on a rotting Oak tree while feeding the pigs. It’s a first-find for us here and is considered to be a good “Beginner’s” mushroom, because there are no similar mushrooms to it which are poisonous. It’s very tasty in cream of mushroom soup and does indeed have a texture similar to chicken breast.
Another new find is considered to be “choice”—related to the shiitake mushroom—Lentinus lepideus.
We got a marvelous wild harvest right in the back yard. These “Pink bottoms” (Agaricus campestris) are very common and closely related to commercially cultivated mushrooms in the grocery stores.
They resemble another common yard mushroom that fools a lot of folks—the toxic Chlorophyllum molybdites —including me once when I was a beginner. It was an excellent lesson considering spending the night hugging the toilet has made me a much more cautious mushroom hunter!
These two often grow together as well, preferring the same conditions, sometimes in ‘fairy rings’. When they are very young the gills of both look white, while still mostly closed.
As they open, the good ones have pinkish gills that change fairly quickly to chocolate brown. The toxic ones have greenish gills that get a grayish-olive tone with age.
And to make matters more confusing, once a little older and browned they could also be confused by a novice with another yard mushroom, the ‘magic’ mushroom, the common psychedelic Psilocybe cubensis. The very bitter taste will be enough to figure that out.
And now, for the grande finale . . . the most perfect specimen of Macrolepiota procera I’ve ever seen! A delicious edible, fairly common wherever there’s been ruminants wandering, like quite a few other wild mushrooms.
Wow, what weather! We got 12 inches of rain overnight on Monday, far more than we’ve ever seen here. Unlike the tornadoes, hurricanes and hail, however, I don’t complain about the rain. This region was made for rain, and lots of it. It’s the droughts that are far more difficult to withstand, and far more unnatural.
Texas Weather Modification doesn’t respond to public inquiries and they don’t share data on all the various projects happening around the state, so who’s to say if this was all Mother Nature. Man’s tech being ‘proprietary’ after all, we peons and peasants are relegated to the realms of conspiracy theory. Folks will continue to deny the weather warfare schemes until the bitter end, I suppose. No one wants to believe man is manufacturing the weather, despite clear evidence right at our fingertips.
However, that’s beside this particular post’s point. This is what we woke up to, the sound of Niagara Falls outside our window! While still in bed I said to Hubby, “What is that sound? It can’t be wind, the trees aren’t blowing!” One look outside and I saw, that’s the creek that now looks like the Mississippi, flowing right over the road and bridge (sorry for the shaky camera, I was focused on the roar more than the image).
While we had several fence issues from the debris, lost a favorite old tree, and the electricity was out for a spell, it’s absolutely amazing to me how resilient nature can be.
The water was mostly receded in just one day and then, out come the lovely fruits as kind rewards for our losses and extra labor.
Chanterelles abound, the flowers and veggies are flourishing. The mosquitoes and ticks too, no gifts given without associated costs.
One delicious dinner of pasta in cream sauce with chanterelles, green brier tips and sweet peas. And another favorite tonight, pizza of course, which Hubby pronounced my best ever. Our own homemade cheese, bacon and sourdough crust certainly help the chanterelles sautéed in garlic butter make their best impression. .
While hunting chanterelles I stumbled upon a rather large patch of this rare beauty which I once mistook for a wild orchid. Actually it’s a Purple Pleat-leaf, in the Iris family. It’s gorgeous in the wild, but wilts immediately when cut. I carefully uprooted a few of the tiny shallow bulbs and transplanted them in the garden.
Hopefully the bees will find them as lovely as I do! If not, they still have their garden favorites.
We had a Foraging Walk that was well worth the two years waiting. The first postponement was after a tornado leveled their property during one of their tribal ceremonies, the Caddo Mounds in Weeping Mary, which I wrote about here and here.
The second time was during the initial stages of the Plandemic, when I cancelled due to mask mandates.
On this fun foray, 3rd time was a charm, no storms, no masks and a very educational afternoon. Top 3 things I learned:
1. Medicinal weeds should never be dehydrated in a machine, something about chemistry. Two ubiquitous weeds I thought had no other redeeming qualities besides bee food: Goldenrod and Carolina geranium, are in fact beneficial medicinals.
2. There’s a compound in red cedar that inhibits the breakdown of alcohol for 18 hours. So, a common practice is to soak some branch tips in strong spirits for a month. The final product becomes kind of like Absinthe in that it’s potent enough to cause hallucinations, which can lead to great art, says me, or, a cheap date, says Hubby.
3. Foraging in areas where there was once iron mining operations, quite common around here apparently, unbeknownst to me, should be avoided due to potential mercury contamination.
A super exciting swarm event is next on the Fun list!
I’ve been wanting to populate a couple of re-furbished TopBar hives, but the dimensions are not the same as those Hubby’s crafted, so splits would prove very challenging.
I was hoping for swarms, and got one off the ‘bearding’ hive I recently wrote about (pictured above). They stationed themselves about 75 feet away in a young cedar tree and I got lucky to find them there immediately, while I was nearby harvesting mulberries. This is our first plentiful mulberry crop and I’m not sure what to make with them. Any suggestions?
I did recently learn from the Deep Green Permaculture site that it’s possible to get a 2nd crop of mulberries by cutting the branches back after the 1st harvest.
As far as the swarm goes, my first attempt was dismal, in the ‘Don’t do this!’ category of the pathetic novice, which I should know better by now, which I post so y’all can laugh at me, as I well deserve.
I don’t know what I was thinking! I wasn’t even good at holding a tray like that as a cocktail waitress. Spontaneous blasphemy makes this quick clip RATED R—For Mature Audiences Acting Immaturely Only. (Bet you didn’t know in a past life I was a sailor!)
The 2nd attempt was successful, thanks to Hubby, who sawed the branch off into my waiting hands so I could gently walked them over to their new hive. They seem to be adjusting nicely! These thoughtful bees saved me lots of messy work.
The Ninja* colony has attracted a gorgeous bird, which I’m pretty sure after consulting my field guide, is a Summer Tanager. Though I don’t approve of his hunting live bees, he does also forage dead bees under the hive, so he gets a pass.
*Ninja colony, so named due to their constant battling yet relatively calm nature. I believe this is at least partly due to their position right next to the house, where they get constant traffic, but seem unperturbed by it, unlike the more remote colonies at the far end of the orchard, who are just plain abusive.
Yes, we are in the middle of unprecedented weather, once again, in East Texas, among many other places. This is not ‘climate change’ as insisted on by the various establishment mouthpieces. This is also not a ‘Grand Solar minimum’ as proposed by ‘science’ establishment mouthpieces, or the various shills of ‘alternative’ media.
It’s weather warfare and if you don’t believe me I challenge you right now to prove me wrong. Do it in whatever way you wish—curse me in the comments as a conspiracy theorist nut job, list the establishment excuses pretending I’ve not heard them already, recite the usual ‘statistics’ proving this is somewhat ‘normal’ since it happened once already (supposedly) in 1930.
And thank you deeply to those friends and family who have reached out with their concern for us and our critters. This is rare and extremely appreciated. Thank the heavens that Handy Hubby is here, and on task. He has reinforced the corrals with tarps and brings the critters hot water and we’ve got all 4 big dogs inside, which is quite a tight situation here in our wee cottage.
Freezing temperatures and snow and ice accumulating for a week sounds normal for much of the country, but in East and South Texas this is unprecedented in any living memory. Our homes, plumbing, barns, infrastructure, etc., are not designed to deal with such weather.
It seems we’ve now got the worst of crazy climate convergences in one state—Drought, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, freezes, snowstorms, hail, and whatever else the weather terrorists dream up for us.
If you plan to join the growing number of hobby beekeepers the very first step should be to define your goals.I learned that the hard way.
It’s a wonderful thing to see the popularity of beekeeping keeps increasing.I love beekeeping for many reasons, but when I was first starting out the learning curve was very intimidating. And that’s coming from someone who usually adores learning.
Not only was there loads to learn about the bees themselves, but also about how to manage their colonies, which changes depending on your hive type, which is dependent on what your goals are as a beekeeper.
The first question to answer for yourself as a newbie is if you are interested in beekeeping as livestock or as habitat provider, or maybe both.
I had several mishaps in my first years because I hadn’t asked myself this most fundamental question.I hadn’t asked myself this because in all the books, forums, courses and club meetings I’d attended, no one asked this question.The general assumption is always that the beekeeper is interested in bees as livestock, because that’s what most want.
In this case, follow the commercial standards, using their Langstroth hives and peripheral equipment, their treatment schedules for pests and diseases, and their feeding programs and supplies, and you should be good to go.You can buy nucs (nucleus colonies) in the spring, and if all goes well you’ll have some honey before winter.This is by far the most popular route to take in beekeeping.
But it’s not for everyone, including me, which took me a few years to figure out.Honey, pollen, wax, propolis, royal jelly, queen rearing, and other processes and products from beekeeping are the main goals of this style of beekeeping and there’s lots to learn from the commercial operators who have mastered many of these skills for maximum efficiency and profit.
However, if you are interested more in providing habitat and learning from the bees, and creating truly sustainable, long-term, self-sufficient colonies in your space, following commercial practices is really not the way to go, and can lead to a lot of expense, confusion and frustration.
In the hopes of encouraging more beekeepers to become honeybee habitat providers rather than livestock managers only, here are a few tips and resources.
The conventional practice is to keep all your hives in a ‘bee yard’ for reasons of convenience and space.This is antithetical to bee colonies’ natural proclivity to nest far from one another. It creates problems of diseases and pests that spread rapidly in conditions of overpopulation, which is why so many treatments are needed, and then feeding when nectar/pollen flow is scarce, as well as being hyper-vigilant in your regular hive inspections to find issues immediately before they spread.Now that I have spaced my 6 hives out around a very large area I’m having far more success. But, only time will tell!
What else I’ve learned:
The typical Langstroth hive is made for easy transport and standardization purposes for the industry mainly, but they are not ideal for the honeybee habitat provider, because they are made with thin walls in order to be lightweight. This means they are poorly insulated and so not suitable for the long-term stability of the hive—getting too hot in summer in southern climates and too cold in winter in northern climates. Our top-bar hives and nucs have thick walls and insulated roofs.
If you want your bees adapted to your area and climate you don’t want to do the conventional practice of buying new queens every couple of years.Ideally, you’ll want your colonies to produce their own queens.Queen-rearing will remain an essential skill for a more advanced beekeeper, because occassionally you may still want to make splits to increase your numbers or to replace weak colonies, or to re-queen another hive displaying poor genetic traits.
When the colonies are weak, depending on the issue, they may need to be culled. This is rarely suggested by professional beekeepers who promote regular treatments on which the weak colonies then become dependent, while still spreading their weak genes on to subsequent generations and their diseases and pests to other colonies.
Just like the faulty logic of ‘herd immunity’ in the vaccine debate among human populations, many commercial beekeepers use the same complaint about those of us who want go au naturel,that is, treatment-free, with our bees.
Many scientists and researchers are trying to raise public awareness that this is not how herd-immunity works, not in livestock or in humans, and I applaud their efforts. I personally find referring to populations of people as a herd to be insulting. I think it actually trains individuals through neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) to think of themselves and each other not as unique and separate individuals, but rather as cattle to be managed.
You’ll also want to mostly forgo the conventional practice of swarm prevention.The goal is for the bees to become self-sufficient, as in the wild, where colonies can live for decades with no hand from man to aid or to disturb.Some of these colonies are enormous, like one we found in an old oil barrel, there for over 15 years and thriving with multiple queens in the same colony, which most likely swarmed annually.
Swarming is a natural, bio-dynamic process performing many different functions for the colony, hygiene being an essential one. Everything the beekeeper takes away from their natural processes is a stress on them which must then be alleviated by other, most likely artificial, means.
Plant perennial and annual crops the bees like for your area and climate.Here in the south there are plenty of plants that bloom at different times most of the year, giving free bee buffets from early spring to late fall, like: bluebonnet, white clover, hairy vetch, wild mustard, vitek, morning glory, trumpet vine, yaupon, and lots of garden herbs and crops, too.It is my greatest pleasure to harvest cucumbers, peas, beans and arugula surrounded by forging bees—they love them as much as we do!
Experimenting and observing is the most fabulous feature of the honeybee habitat provider!
I know a homeschooling homesteader with an observation hive in their house that the children treasure.Not only do they learn from these fascinating creatures about how they operate in the hive, but how they are connected to the seasons and to their environment.They’re learning constantly from the colonies’ successes as much as from their failures.
I practice slightly different techniques with each hive to discover which methods work best here on the wee homestead: one hive has a screened bottom board, one I keep with a reduced entrance all year, one’s in full-sun and another partial shade, and so on.Not that this will necessarily solve the mystery of colony failure, but every bit of data helps!
Some unconventional resources:
The Shamanic Way of the Bee: Ancient Wisdom and Healing Practices of the Bee Masters by Simon Buxton (2004)
The Dancing Bees: An Account of the Life and Senses of the Honey Beeby Karl von Frisch (1953)
Top-Bar Beekeeping: Organic Practices for Honeybee Health by Les Crowder & Heather Harrell (2012)
Natural Beekeeping: Organic Approaches to Modern Apiculture by Ross Conrad (2013)